Discoveries of The Vedic Rishis

Track Running Discoveries of The Vedic Rishis 504

I’ll give you now a more precise formula, because this is very important.

It was the Vedic Rishis who discovered that you cannot achieve all this unless you perfect your capacities, all your capacities. It is a total sacrifice that you make of all your capacities.

What are those capacities? Basically, there are three kinds.

There is first a capacity of knowledge, and there are faculties of knowledge like buddhi, medha, dhi, mati, so many terms you find in the Veda to describe various gradations of this power of knowledge. You must develop all these powers. You will find in the Veda therefore many verses which are given to the understanding of various powers of knowledge and how they can be developed. Medhavinam kuru, “make me full of medha” that is one of the great verses of the Veda. Two days ago I spoke of Gayatri, where dhi is supposed to be united with the sunlight so that our intellect is directed by the Supreme Light. So there is first powers of knowledge, realities of the powers of knowledge which are described. When you read the Vedas, you feel amazed by the amount of psychological knowledge contained in them. Today we are very proud of our modern psychology, but compared to the Veda it is the a–b–c. Profound psychology is given in the Veda, varieties of capacities are described, and how they can be developed. It is not only a question of the faculties, but of how they can be developed, that is a great discovery.

The second capacity is that of will and action. Everyone has got some rudimentary will, which is normally expressed in the form of desire; everyone is active in a certain way. The most normal movement of action is restlessness; all of us have some kind of restlessness. You must have seen that when you have nothing to do you loiter about, you go someplace and you just do nothing, but many things happen out of doing nothing! You just watch somebody from your balcony, and suddenly some action proceeds out of it. It was not your intention, but on the spur of the moment some activity starts. This is restlessness.

And then there is instinct, –– restlessness is not instinct. Instinct is a deliberate movement of action which goes towards an object, it has a purpose. Every instinctive movement has a purpose, while restlessness has none. When I am hungry, automatically I look for food, nobody needs to teach me this; I neglect everything else and I look for food, it’s a very purposeful, directed activity, it goes straight towards its end, the acquisition of food. I strive for food, I discover it, and I gulp it. This is instinct; it is a second way in which we are active.

The third is desire, which is different from instinct. Instinct is spontaneous, it happens automatically; desire may rise out of instinct, but it is itself learned: I begin to desire because of certain experiences. I may desire to get the highest marks in an examination, because I have found that everyone praises the one who comes in first. Desire is the result of an experience of which you begin to enjoy the fruit. You don’t necessarily need it, but you like it. Instincts are needed, they impose themselves, they are imperative, but the objects of desire are not needed absolutely. You find them, you develop them, and they become so powerful that you must have them. So desire is also a motivator of action.

And then there is egoism. In Sanskrit it is called ahambhava. You do an action, not because you desire, but because you can affirm yourself, assert yourself. In a debate you have expressed a view, and then you say, “It is my view.” You have said something, and you become addicted to it because you have said it, you hold on to your view, and afterwards you’ll do anything to vindicate it. You’ll fight for it. Egoism is another means of action.

And then there is will, the fifth force of action. In desire, there is a movement to grasp from the outside world what you do not possess; in will, you express what you already possess. Will is a power and arises out of power, capacity, while desire arises out of incapacity.

Now all of these were studied by the Vedic Rishis, and they found that all have to be developed in such a way that restlessness stops, instinct is transformed, desire is abolished and egoism is annulled, until you arrive at the Supreme Will, until the Supreme Will, which is irresistible, which is most victorious, manifests itself through you.

The third capacity is that of feeling. The Veda describes various kinds of emotions. You might say that the whole Veda is a science of knowledge, a science of action, and a science of emotions. And the highest emotion they discovered was that of unrestricted joy and unrestricted self–giving: surrender. This was the discovery. The highest is surrender. Nama uktim vedema. This word namah means surrender. Salutations, bowing down, offering, this is namah. To arrive at the condition of namah was the highest achievement that they discovered. If you have this condition of namah in your consciousness, if you can always say spontaneously “namah, namah, namah”, then there is nothing that you cannot achieve, –– Nothing. All is contained in namah. The moment you say “namah” truly, all will be available.

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